Live and Local
On today's edition of "Live and Local," we'll meet Natalie Ellis, founder and creative director of Class Act Interactive Education and Events in Champaign, an "applied theater" company that uses improvisation, character creation, costume and design to engage children and adults. And I'll talk with David Commanday, music director of the newly created Heartland Festival Orchestra in Peoria, and pianist Antonio Pompa-Baldi, who appears with the orchestra in their inaugural concert this Friday night.
Kathy Murphy was a founding member of the Champaign Urbana Theatre Company and its unifying life force. This Saturday in Champaign, a group of friends and colleagues will present Kathy Murphy Encore, an evening of entertainment and appreciation, to raise money for a scholarship in her name. A few of those friends will join us on the Friday edition of "Live and Local.
USA Ballet, based in Bloomington-Normal, will appear at the art deco Watseka Theatre this weekend, with an unusual presentation involving area dance students. On Thursday's "Live and Local," I'll talk with Chuck Gomez, manager of the Watseka Theatre, and Kenneth Bello, USA Ballet's choreographer, about the performance and its affiliated offerings.
Jeffrey Magee heads the musicology department at the University of Illinois and teaches and writes about music in the United States. He is the author of "The Uncrowned King of Swing: Fletcher Henderson" and "Big Band Jazz" and is now writing a book about Irving Berlin. Jeff Magee will be my guest on the Wednesday edition of "Live and Local."
Tom Turino is a musicology and anthropology professor at the University of Illinois, but listeners will more likely encounter him playing Cajun or other roots music on banjo, accordion and guitar. He and his son Matt, himself a fiddler and guitarist, have recently released a CD called "Here and Far Away." The Turinos will join us live in our studio on the Tuesday edition of "Live and Local.
On the Monday edition of "Live and Local," I'll talk with Melissa Merli, longtime arts and entertainment writer at Champaign-Urbana's News-Gazette and author of its weekly "Arts Beat" column. Melissa will give us a peek at her reporter's life and share some of her favorite recordings.
William Miller taught voice at the University of Illinois School of Music from the 1940s to 1975 and continued to teach long after his retirement, with many loyal-and a few illustrious-former students. On Sunday the Miller Legacy Chorus and Soloists will give a concert in his memory, and we'll have a couple of notable members of that group on Friday's "Live and Local.
Country-indie music star Kathy Mattea will appear this Friday night at the University of Illinois Research Park. Opening for her will be Ryan Groff, lead singer for the local band Elsinore. On the Thursday edition of "Live and Local," we'll have a conversation with Kathy Mattea and hear Ryan live in the studio.
According to the Barbershop Harmony Society, barbershop harmony creates "a rich and satisfying texture that is pleasing to the ears and invigorating to the soul." For some it's a hobby; for others, it's a passion. On Wednesday's "Live and Local," my guests will be four gentlemen for whom barbershopping is clearly a passion: a quartet from Danville called Four on the Floor.
The Chris Reyman Jazz Trio consists of Chris Reyman on piano, Mark O'Connor on tenor sax and Chris Nolte on bass. All are in the doctoral program in jazz studies at the University of Illinois, and they perform live in our Studio F on today's "Live and Local.
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